Rajdhanis to south India get a snazzy makeover | delhi | Hindustan Times
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Rajdhanis to south India get a snazzy makeover

Next time you take one of the South India-bound Rajdhani Express trains, you might notice some difference, reports Avishek G Dastidar.

delhi Updated: Jan 17, 2010 23:53 IST
Avishek G Dastidar

Next time you take one of the South India-bound Rajdhani Express trains, you might notice some difference.

For one, the interiors will be spick and span with the toilets and washbasin smelling of disinfectant throughout the journey, and the coaches floor may not stay littered with spilled food items.

Along with that, its public announcement system may constantly air advertisement jingles, and marketing executives might catch hold of you within the confines of the train with questionnaires about their products and sales pitches.

All this is because six Rajdhani trains to South India now have a private company taking care of its general upkeep and on-board cleanliness in return for using the trains as a veritable marketing tool.

The exterior of the trains are completely vinyl-wrapped to host advertisement campaigns.

“Passengers are usually bored during journeys. We will use this opportunity to interact with them regarding products, make them aware about newproducts and even generate new consumer database through surveys etc,” said Sanjai Jalla of Peacock Media Ltd, the company behind the initiative. The first such train, the Hazrat Nizamuddin-Trivandram, was flagged off on Sunday. Kerala Tourism is using the train’s exterior to popularize its ‘Go Kerala’ campaign under the famous ‘God’s Own Country’ banner.

Next in line are an insurance firm and a consumer goods manufacturer to use the trains as marketing vehicles.

This company has also acquired a Swarn Shatabdi to Amritsar and sold the marketing rights to a property development company.

“The property company will get a chance to market its products to around 1000 passengers as captive audience per trip,” Jalla said. This will make railways richer. “We will get Rs 17 crore in five years for lending out the six trains to the marketing firm,” said a senior railway official.